At the 2012 London Olympics, there was a lot of expectations with the Indian contngent after their brilliant performances in the previous edition of the Olympics in Beijing and they did not disappoint one bit. The Indian contingent came back with a haul of six medals; 4 bronze medals and 2 silver medals, leading to India’s best ever performance at a summer Olympic games. One of the greatest performances at the 2012 games came from Saina Nehwal, who became the first player in India’s badminton history, to return home with a medal.
Saina ethced her name in Indian history, winning the country’s maiden medal from badminton. She won the bronze medal after China’s Xin Wang retired hurt from the bronze medal play-off in the women’s singles event. Luck also played its part as, Saina had lost her first game in the play-off match 18-21 and was trailing 0-1 in the second game, before Xin Wang had to retire hurt with a knee injury.
Saina was clealy elated after the match and was filled with emotion, expressing her pride at becoming India’s first badminton player to come back with a medal from an Olympics game. She said after the match, “I have never won a match like this before. It was my dream to see the flag go up.”
After the victory, Saina’s stock would continue to rise as she would go on to become the No.1 badminton player in the world and would win many more titles, leading to much deserved recognition in the country.